Nigeria: Shi'ites group insist on seeing Shaikh Zakzaky as condition to appear in Commission of inquiry
By Mohammad Ibrahim
Feb 25,Abuja: Members of Islamic Movement in Nigeria known as shi'ites have refused to make presentation at the commission of inquiry set up by the government to investigate crisis that occurred between their members and Nigerian Army on 12-13 December 2015.
The incident which occurred in the ancient city of Zaria Kaduna State North West part of the country led to the death of hundred of shi'ites with their leader Shaikh Ibraheem Zakzaky and his wife been incarcerated ever since.
The chairman of the commission Justice Muhammadu Lawal Garba at his inaugural sitting on Monday 21 February in Kaduna had to adjourned sitting to Wednesday 23rd February following Shi'ites refusal to present memorandum, saying until their counsel meet with their leader Shaikh Zakzaky for briefing.
When the counsel to Shi'ites , Mr. Maxwel Kyon appeared before the Commission on Wednesday, he pleaded for two weeks adjournment to enable him get access and briefing from his client.
But the Chairman of the Commission, Justice Muhammadu Lawal Garba asked the counsel to Nigerian Army, Mr. Abba Audu whether he opposed to the two weeks plead by the Shi'ites counsel.
The Army counsel did not oppose the plead, saying that it was in the interest of justice.
However, counsel to the Commission, Usman Yunus Ustaz (SAN) who said he was not objecting to the plead, noted however that the two weeks oral application was too long to be granted in view of the fact that the panel has only six weeks to conclude its sitting and submit report.
The Commission chairman did not grant the IMN counsels plead for two weeks adjournment, he however, adjourned the sitting till Monday, February 29, 2016 as a grace for the counsel to get access to his client and get needed briefings.
“We are adjourning till February 29, 2016 to enable you get access to your client, and whether you get access to him or not, you have to report back to the Commission so that we can continue with the proceedings” panel Chairman said," he said.
Addressing newsmen shortly after the adjournment, IMN counsel, Mr. Maxwel Kyon said the embattled Shiites leader is in the custody of the Directorate of the State Security (DSS).
He added that efforts to get in touch with the IMN leader to get briefings was impossible.
"There are indications that we may have some interaction with our client between now and the weekend, after which the possibility of filing a memo may be considered."He said
Commission's chairman also assured all parties involved by reiterating that the commission is determined to conduct a true, fair and impartial investigation into the matter.
The Oslo Times